Miguel Azeez has had to be patient for first-team involvement since returning from his loan spell at Portsmouth, but yesterday was a notable occasion for the youngster.
Azeez was initially named as the extra man for Arsenal’s game against Brighton but he was promoted to the substitutes bench as Mazeed Ogungbo was a late withdrawal.
Although Azeez is still waiting for his Premier League debut, his involvement with the squad was a reward for some encouraging performances for Arsenal at U23 level of late.
It has been a somewhat strange season for Azeez. After catching the eye towards the end of pre-season, he joined Portsmouth on loan.
Azeez’s spell at Portsmouth didn’t work out quite as expected and he didn’t play as much as had been hoped but he did still gain some useful experience of being in a first-team environment.
Upon returning to Arsenal’s U23 squad, Azeez struggled a little initially and appeared devoid of confidence.
One of the main criticisms levelled at Azeez is that, for all the technical ability he possesses, he doesn’t always dominate games and take them by the scruff of the neck.
Of late, however, the 19-year-old has been playing with much more freedom and his performances have been of a high standard.
Azeez’s aim for the remainder of the campaign will be to make his Premier League debut, with another loan spell likely next season.